Humanity & Digital Life

In an lengthy article for NYMag, Andrew Sullivan speaks to some of the dangers of the technology we hold so closely:

Information soon penetrated every waking moment of our lives. And it did so with staggering swiftness. We almost forget that ten years ago, there were no smartphones, and as recently as 2011, only a third of Americans owned one. Now nearly two-thirds do. That figure reaches 85 percent when you’re only counting young adults. And 46 percent of Americans told Pew surveyors last year a simple but remarkable thing: They could not live without one. The device went from unknown to indispensable in less than a decade. The handful of spaces where it was once impossible to be connected — the airplane, the subway, the wilderness — are dwindling fast. Even hiker backpacks now come fitted with battery power for smartphones. Perhaps the only “safe space” that still exists is the shower.

Note a key point he makes deep in the article:

If the churches came to understand that the greatest threat to faith today is not hedonism but distraction, perhaps they might begin to appeal anew to a frazzled digital generation.

I’ve been reading a lot about the precarious or even dangerous position we are in with our screen-filled digital-first lives. I see it every single day on the college campus – flocks of students who are linked at the palm to their devices. I don’t question the incredible value we get from modern technology, but there are costs associated with it too.

(via NYMag)